Recap of Paris Trip 2016

01/05/2017 0 Comments

New Years weekend had me reminiscing about my trip to Paris for last year’s New Years Eve (2016).  I thought today I would recap what I did, what I ate and what I saw during my stay in Paris.

This recap will be more of an off the beaten path guide/recap since back in 2010 I went around Paris doing mostly touristy things. 

My sister was an Au Pair from Sept 2015 until July 2016 for two families that each had two young children. She flew to New York for the Christmas holiday and I flew back with her to be there for the New Year. My sister Alyssa’s favorite city is Paris and I’ve always wanted to experience it with her. I was so happy to have this opportunity to see a different side of Paris and meet the families. she was working with



She lived in the 17th arrondissment near the Sacré-Cœur, Montmarte and the Moulin Rouge in an apartment with a young 20s girl who was a french harpist that the families set her up with. I didn’t take any pictures of the apartment because it was very messy but she had a great experience living separately from the families. 

We arrived on December 30th, dropped our bags at her place and went straight to the square near the Sacré-Cœur. It was still decorated for the holidays and it was magical. We walked around looking at the art and walked to dinner at La Pierrade in Montmarte (Travel Tip: I suggest using the bookmark feature on the Yelp App to keep track of recommendations). If was the first fabulous dinner filled with wine, bread and surprisingly good salads.


On New Years Eve day we started off waiting in line to go to the top of the Arc de Triomphe. It really is the best way to get a picture of the Eiffel Tower from above.

Love my sister! I was happy to be sharing her favorite city with her. Before her adventure she had already been to Paris 8 times by the age of 25. This was the first time she got to be in Paris with an immediate family member.

Champs-Élysées in the back

Recreating a picture of my first time in Paris, only I had the weirdest outfit of a rain jacket and birkenstocks on in 2010 lol

Afterwards we walked along the Champs-Élysées, which was so busy due to the New Years celebrations about to happen that night. The Christmas markets were so pretty and they had tons of rides for children. 

We crossed through the Jardin des Tuileries on the way to our next stop.

It was a beautiful blue sky day 🙂

I had been dying to go to Angelina after seeing the hot chocolate and pastries all over Instagram.

Angelina team room Mont Blanc

Happy as can be!

She’s obliging me 🙂

For more on the desserts check out my Dessert First: Paris post.

I loved how elegant Angelina’s was. It was a great way to celebrate New Years Eve day.

We had dinner near the Eiffel tower and then it was time to get a spot to watch the fireworks when the clock hit midnight.

We have a french champagne!

Pictures with the Eiffel tower are a must!

Ok so we had a big let down sitting in front of the Eiffel Tower. Due to the terror attacks that happened a month and half earlier there was no firework celebration at the tower. It did it’s normal light show as it always does on the new hour. The firework show was at the Arc de Triomphe that year and we didn’t realize earlier in the day thats why everyone was setting up over there. However, we made the most of it and celebrated with the french and some other Americans. It was still amazing to be at the Eiffel Tower to ring in the New Year even if it wasn’t the normal celebration.

Days 3 -5

We flew to Geneva, Switzerland! Stay tuned for the recap of that part of the trip next week!

Day 6

Back in Paris!

First stop sushi, because thats what you think of when you think of Paris right?!

Alyssa’s neighborhood sushi spot, Naoko Biot, was so good! We stopped for lunch after our morning flight. I loved the little “bridges” the sushi came on.

Then we set out for some dessert (check out my Dessert First post on Paris), because there’s always room for a pain au chocolat when in Paris!

Gontran Cherrier

These treats from Gontran Cherrier were amazing! My sister picked out two for me to try. I don’t remember their specific names, but I doubt anything in the boulangerie would be delicious. They had the best pain au chocolat around!


Famous Montmartre cemetery

When walking back to her apartment we passed the infamous Montmartre cemetery where Alexander Dumas is buried. I hear its a great place to tour if you are into art or spooky type of places.

We picked up the kids at school and they were so happy to see Alyssa. We spent the night at the family’s house with an amazing dinner because I was visiting. I was so thankful for their hospitality and it was a delicious meal.

Day 7

My sister had the morning free before her French speaking class she took twice a week while she was there. We decided to walk around the area her class was in which happened to be next to Notre Dame.

Grabbing a coffee and cookie while taking in the view of Notre Dame at Shakesphere & Co. before class.

There was a beautiful park across the street from Shakespeare & Co. that I explored for a little bit.

Then it was on to Notre Dame!

Lighting a candle for all my family past and present 🙂

Such a beautiful sight!

Then it was time to go get Alyssa and go to lunch at…

La crêperie Saint Germain in the Monalie area near Notre Dame. Their crepes were hands down the best I’ve had during my two trips to Paris, and I’ve had quite a few. I’m so thankful my sister brought me to this little gem. The decor was an added bonus, it felt very mediterranean.

Day 8


I have to say my favorite part of this whole trip was getting to see my sister interact with the families, especially the children. She did such a good job with the language and bonding with the children from my point of view. The adults spoke English for me while I was there, but would sometimes switch to French so that she could work on hers.

We needed some mid day coffee and sweets to get us through the day with the kids 😉 (check here for where these are from)

While the older kids were at music class we walked to this absolutely adorable park nearby. I don’t know where my pictures of the carousel went 🙁 I love that, in Paris, every park has a carousel, it seems like a magical touch.

That night dinner was back in Montmartre at a restaurant called La Cave Gourmande. I had a delicious beef bourguignon with my favorite sides of wine and bread 😉

Love all the lights!

Had to stop by the Moulin Rouge since I have a crazy picture on the same vent from 5 years earlier, plus it’s one of my favorite movies 🙂

The next morning was my flight back to the states!

I had an amazing time and didn’t even document every place we ate and stopped along the way. I liked this trip because I felt like I was seeing Parisian life up close through my sister and the families she worked for.

Leave a comment if you have a favorite place to stop or eat at if you’re in Paris! Or let me know if you have any questions about the restaurants I talked about 🙂


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Cupcake N Dreams

New Yorker blogging about travel and lifestyle things that make me happy!